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One that serves as a leader or as a leading indicator of future trends: "The degree to which the paper is censored is a political bellwether" (Justine De Lacy).
[Middle English bellewether, wether with a bell hung from its neck, leader of the flock : belle, bell; see bell1 + wether, wether; see wether.]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. (Breeds) a sheep that leads the herd, often bearing a bell
2. a leader, esp one followed unquestioningly
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
1. a person or thing that assumes leadership.
2. a person or thing that indicates a trend.
3. a sheep wearing a bell and leading a flock.
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
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|Noun||1.||bellwether - someone who assumes leadership of a movement or activity|
leader - a person who rules or guides or inspires others
|2.||bellwether - sheep that leads the herd often wearing a bell|
wether - male sheep especially a castrated one
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.